Greek question

manaster at manaster at
Thu Feb 4 15:41:54 UTC 1999

I am pleased and impressed.  I did not think that Mr.
Ryan and I would ever agree on anything, but although
I dont see as yet how we can invoke *newgh- because
the *ew does not agree with the vocalism of *nokwt-/*nekwt-
(the -u- in Greek is a late development explained
by a law stated by Cowgill if memory serves, so
we cannot posit a proto-form with *u/w),
I myself just yesterday proposed precisely that we could
have *neghw-/*noghw- plus -t- and I anticipated our
moderator's objection by pointing out that there it
is NOT clear that Bartholomae's Law was in effect
in early PIE (or Pre-PIE).  But much needs to be done
before we can glibly assert any of this, both with
regard to BL and with regard to the IE vocalism
and the original meaning of *nokwt-/*nekwt- and
of course to any extra-IE connections.

On Mon, 1 Feb 1999, Patrick C. Ryan wrote:


> I would like to put forward a thought based on my own comparative efforts.

> I believe the base of <nu:kto/s> is IE *neugh-, and therefore contrasts with
> all the other derivatives listed under Pokorny's *nekw-, which are derived
> from an alternative form: *negh-; both of which having the meaning 'black'.

> When the IE stem with -to was originated, the final consonants of both stems
> were de-voiced to *k(h).

> The entry in Pokorny that comes closest to being related to the Greek forms
> is *neuk(h)-, 'dark', from earlier *neugh- + -s/t- (metathesis in Latin
> nuscitio:sus).

> The root without -u- is also attested in Egyptian nHzj, 'Nubian = black
> (man)'.

> Pat

> [ Moderator's comment:
>   But this violates Bartholomae's Law:  The Sanskrit evidence shows us -kt-,
>   which could not arise from PIE *-ght- (which gives Sanskrit -gdh-).
>   --rma ]

More information about the Indo-european mailing list